US Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards Credit Card – A Step Above Mediocre

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The US Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards credit card is a neat little piece of plastic. With double miles on select purchases and a $25 credit on each reward flight, travelers will find the FlexPerk’s rewards program highly alluring. But despite its extensive list of benefits, the FlexPerks card doesn’t quite measure up to the competition. Better options are out there. Here we review the US Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards Visa Signature (long enough name?) and recommend a couple superior alternatives for travel rewards.

Pretty okay rewards

Travel cards are all about the rewards. The first thing to look at is the signup bonus. The FlexPerks card currently offers 20,000 points when you spend $3,500 in the first 5 months. Next, you want to review the ongoing rewards. The big draw of the FlexPerks program is the 2 points per dollar spent on gas, grocery, cell phone and airline purchases. Double miles on these essential categories should really propel your earning potential. Charitable donations earn 3 FlexPoints per dollar, and all other purchases earn 1 point per dollar.

The FlexPerks card comes will a couple other cool perks outside the points program. Each reward ticket you redeem with FlexPoints comes with a $25 airline allowance. You can put this toward ancillary costs–anything from baggage fees to in-flight meals. With ancillary charges perpetually on the rise, some travelers will really appreciate the help.

APR deal, EMV chip and more

The best travel credit cards will not charge a foreign transaction fee. Unfortunately, the US Bank FlexPerks card does. Typically, foreign transaction fees are 3% of every out-of-country purchase. With the FlexPerks card, you will be charged 2% on out-of-country purchases that use US currency and 3% on purchases that use foreign currency. This is one of the FlexPerks’ biggest flaws. While it won’t effect domestic travel, international travelers will pay more for activity abroad.

On the plus side, the FlexPerks does come equipped with an EMV chip. EMV chips are a credit card technology used throughout much of the world, prevalent especially in Europe. Regular American credit cards are sometimes rejected because they cannot be read by all EMV card readers. With an EMV chip, you shouldn’t have compatibility issues.

And finally, the annual fee is $49, waived the first year. For a travel rewards card, that’s fairly low. Your rewards will easily offset the cost.

Better travel choices

All in all, the US Bank FlexPerks card is an all right card. But if you’re looking for travel rewards, we recommend looking at these guys.

Capital One Venture

The Capital One Venture is one of our favorite travel credit cards. Why? It’s simple and rewarding. Unlike the FlexPerks, which offers  2% back only in select categories, the Venture earns rewards at a flat 2% rate across ALL purchases. Double miles on everything means rewards accumulate fast. You can redeem for flight on any airline, stays at any hotel and car rental for any service without restrictions or blackout dates. The signup bonus is generous: Enjoy a one-time bonus of 40,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months, equal to $400 in travel The Venture does not charge a pesky foreign transaction fee, making it a great international travel card. The annual fee is $0 intro for first year; $59 after that.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is notable for its gargantuan signup bonus and awesome ongoing rewards. Right now, the signup bonus is great: earn 40,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening From there, rewards accumulate at 2% on travel and dining and 1% on everything else. When you redeem for travel booked through Chase, your points are worth 25% more. Like the Venture, the Sapphire does not charge a foreign transaction fee, so now worries taking it aboard. The annual fee is $95, waived the first year.

  • Deepak Aggarwal

    I believe your analysis is wrong on this. Each flex point is worth 2 cents (not 1 cents as you stated), (20,000 flex points = $400). So you get 2% back on every purchase made plus 4% back on either gas or grocery or airline fee (which ever one you spend more on). Plus 6% back on charities. Please let me know if I did my math wrong.

    • MightyTravels

      Deepak I think you are spot on – also think the Flexperks card isn’t that bad. Current offer is for 20,000 points after $3,500 spend.

  • DC

    You need to be aware of how U.S. Bank operates in relation to this card. I applied for this card, but was sent a letter asking for more information. When I called, I was questioned by a gentleman who sounded like he came straight out of the FBI. A week later I called about my application and discovered that I had been “approved.”

    What was not clear, however, until later was that I had not been approved for the card I had applied for – the US Bank Flexperks Visa Signature card – but instead I got a new Flexperks “Select Rewards” card. This card is completely useless and a waste of plastic. You get only 1 point for every $2 of spend.

    To me, this is more like a bait and switch tactic. And, yes, I now am aware that in the little bitty writing on their online application, it says that US Bank may approve you for this card. Still – bait and switch, I say.

  • Randolph Mayer

    Undependable because poor security algorithms mean you will not be able to rely on it for travel. We spend a lot with the card and pay the balance each month. Our experience is that we have been inconveniently blocked when traveling at least three times. Most recently, an approximately $100 purchase was blocked at a Whole Foods in Minneapolis. We had called the day before to indicate that we were traveling to Minneapolis, and we have been charging at Whole Foods in New York regularly for at least two years! But much worse was that I was put on hold for more than an hour trying to get the card unblocked. If you don’t mind this kind of service, by all means sign up.

  • JP

    I have a question. I’m wondering which card is better for getting points toward the air travel. I am deciding between US Bank flexpoont card and Capital One venture rewards card. Venture is 2x points, but the US bank flexpoints seem to be worth more. I would be putting a $1000 a month, including gas bill, electric bill, phone bill, gas for vehicle, and other miscellaneous like eating out. The balance would be paid off every month so there’s no interest. After everything is considered, which card would be the best for my family? Any comment is welcome. Thanks